Intel's New Optane 905P Is The Fastest SSD Ever

The king is dead. Long live the king. According to our early test results, Intel's just-announced Optane SSD 905P SSD (960GB) is the fastest storage device by a wide margin. The $1,299, 960GB HHHL add-in card dominated other top-performers such as the Samsung 970 EVO (1TB) and Intel's own Optane 900P drive.

For example, when we ran PCMark 8, the Optane 905P was 11 percent faster than its next closest competitor, the Optane 900P (480GB) and more than 300 percent quicker than the Samsung 970 EVO(1TB).

Cost-conscious shoppers can spend $599 to get the 480GB, U.2 version of the 905P, which we have not yet tested. These drives are additions to Intel's 900P series of Optane-powered SSDs so they don't replace siblings like the 900P (480GB).At press time, Newegg had both 905P drives, but the 960GB model was sold out.

The 960GB 905P also has two blue LED strips on the sides that illuminate the inside of your case. Both 905P drives promise up to 2,600 MB/s sequential read and 2,200 MB/s sequential write speeds. Intel claims a random performance of 575,000 IOPS read and 550,000 IOPS write.

Performance Testing

We've only had our 960GB add-in card for a few hours, but we were still able to run some tests. The 905P isn't just the fastest consumer SSD ever released--because it sports higher performance than the P4800X enterprise version with the same 3D XPoint memory technology, this is the fastest SSD ever released for any market.

Intel bills the 905P as a workstation product designed to accelerate extended workloads. It features incredible low queue depth performance but really shines when the CPU wants to chew data at high rates. With hard disk drives and even flash, the CPU will have to wait for data from the storage system. The Optane 905P feeds the processor faster, if you have a project that can actually take advantage of the performance on tap.

Compared to the Optane SSD 900P 480GB, the new 905P delivers similar queue depth 1 and QD2 random read performance. At QD4 the 905P slams into a new gear that's capable of 200,000 IOPS with a single worker (CPU core). We see a similar increase at QD4 in our random write test when comparing the previous to the new generation Optane SSD.

The 905P also boosts mixed workloads where the controller and memory must execute complex IO steams with data coming and going at very high speeds. The increased mixed workload performance leads us to believe the 905P will increase application performance over the previous generation. We'll know more in the coming days as we execute some of our own mixed IO with testing and writing the review happening simultaneously.

Look for our full review of the Optane 905P later this week.

Technical Specifications

960GB AIC - $1,200 (MSRP)
480GB 2.5" U.2 - $599 (MSRP)
480GB AIC - $550
280GB AIC -  $340
280GB 2.5" U.2 - $360
Intel Custom NVMe
Intel Custom NVMe
3D XPoint
3D XPoint
Sequential Read
2,600 MB/s
2,500 MB/s
Sequential Write
2,200 MB/s
2,000 MB/s
Random Read
575,000 IOPS
550,000 IOPS
Random Write
550,000 IOPS
500,000 IOPS
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  • dudmont
    Improved Optane or is the controller at play here?
  • WyomingKnott
    An SSD that is significantly faster than others, but only in random access. Sequential read and write are both exceeded at all depths by the Samsung 970 Pro (Ok, not a consumer device?), in write by the SanDisk and the 970 EVO, in write by the HP EX920. It starts at the top at QD1 for random reads and writes, and smokes the competition at higher QD. Might it be inappropriate for even the high-end consumers?

    Of course, a hard drive is perfectly good for most sequential applications, like playing video, but video editors might find this the fastest
  • leoscott
    Considering Newegg has the 970 1tb for 351 (m.2), or 27% of the price of this Optane, 11% performance improvement just doesn't sound that impressive. MEH